Tag Archives: Spirit

The Holiness Of God & The Love Of God

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“To be really Bible-believing Christians we need to practice, simultaneously, at each step of the way, two biblical principles.

One principle is that of the purity of the visible church. Scripture commands that we must do more than just talk about the purity of the visible church; we must actually practice it, even when it is costly.

The second principle is that of an observable love among all true Christians. In the flesh we can stress purity without love, or we can stess love without purity; we cannot stress both simultaneously. To do so we must look moment by moment to the work of Christ and to the Holy Spirit. Without that, a stress on purity becomes hard, proud, and legalistic; likewise without it a stress on love becomes sheer compromise.

Spiritually begins to have real meaning in our lives as we begin to exhibit simultaneously the holiness of God and the love of God. We never do this perfectly, but we must look to the living Christ to help us do it truly.”

Francis A. Schaeffer, The Great Evangelical Disaster

You Are My King (Amazing Love) by Christy Nockels

You Are My King

I’m forgiven because you were forsaken.
I’m accepted, You were condemned.
I’m alive and well, your spirit is within me. Because you died and rose again.

I’m forgiven because you were forsaken.
I’m accepted, you were condemned.
I’m alive and well, your spirit is within me. Because you died and rose again

Amazing love, how can it be?
That you, my king. would die for me
Amazing love, I know it’s true
Its my joy to honor you
Amazing love how can it be?
That my king would die for me
Amazing love I know it’s true
Its my joy to honor you
In all I do
I honor you

Fresh And New Into His Likeness

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Here I sit in the middle of eternity.  This wheelchair has helped me sit still.  I’ve observed with curiosity the way we Christians grasp for the future, as if the present didn’t quite satisfy.  How we, in spiritual fits and starts, scrape and scratch our way along, often missing the best of life while looking the other way, preoccupied with shaping our future.  In my least consistent moments I too try to wrest the future out of his hands.  Or worse, I sink back into the past and rest on long-ago laurels  But God is most concerned with the choices I make now.  God, standing silently and invisibly and presently with us in the middle of eternity, is interested in a certain kind of change.  He brings us choices through which we never-endingly change, fresh and new into his likeness.

Joni Eareckson Tada

An Evening With Eugene “Hideaway” Bridges! 😄

 Wow!! Just returned home from an evening of Worship at church, where we were blessed by the amazing voice of Eugene “Hideaway” Bridges and his Spiritual songs, it was an honour to meet him too! 🙂

Read about Eugene “Hideaway” Bridges on Wikipedia…. 

Eugene 2

Eugene 1

⇧ Eugene “Hideaway Bridges performing at our church ⇧ 

Eugene  Hideaway Bridges  Me

⇧ Me meeting Eugene during the interval 🙂 ⇧ 

Ephesians 5:19 New International Version – UK (NIVUK)

speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord,

A Personal Journey

Child of Light

Hi all!! Sorry if it’s felt like i’ve deserted you. I’ve been on a partial fast (The Daniel Fast) for the whole of October, so i havn’t been on my blog much at all. God has taught me more in this last month than the last 10 years of my new life as a Christian. 

I’ve been studying Ephesians 4 & 5 verse by verse and through many tears the spirit has shown me how i’ve been grieving him, and what i need to correct as i’m a child of light. So walk as a child of light! 🙂

I’m away this weekend for Sarah’s Dad’s 70th birthday, but i’ll be back as usual on Monday!

I’ve really missed you guys! x 🙂

✞ Music “Starts With Me” by Tim Timmons

“Starts With Me”

What could I do to leave a legacy?
How can I speak with authority
When I can’t see You, I can’t see You
How can I know the dreams You have for me?
How can I believe beyond what I have seen?
When I can’t hear You, I can’t feel You now
No, no, no

[Chorus:]
You’re my revival song, You start where I belong
On my knees, on my knees
When I am weak or strong You meet me here
When I’m on my knees, on my knees
Oh, it starts with me

Why do I try to work outside of You?
Knocking down doors I should be going through
But I’m so tired, I’m so tired
You take my burdens off of my shoulders
You break the lies that hold me back
I’m not sure enough

I really wanna change the world
I really wanna sing Your song
But I know revival’s got to start with me
I really wanna change the world
I really wanna sing Your song
But I know revival’s got to start with me

Unity And Maturity In The Body Of Christ

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Ephesians 4:1-6 New International Version

Unity and Maturity in the Body of Christ

As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

Members Of God’s Holy Family

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Ephesians 2:17-22 The Voice

17 The Great Preacher of peace and love came for you, and His voice found those of you who were near and those who were far away. 18 By Him both have access to the Father in one Spirit. 19 And so you are no longer called outcasts and wanderers but citizens with God’s people, members of God’s holy family, and residents of His household. 20 You are being built on a solid foundation: the message of the prophets and the voices of God’s chosen emissaries with Jesus, the Anointed Himself, the precious cornerstone. 21 The building is joined together stone by stone—all of us chosen and sealed in Him, rising up to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In Him you are being built together, creating a sacred dwelling place among you where God can live in the Spirit.

The church is not a building constructed by humans but a divine institution, built on the living Stone, Jesus. He’s the strong, foundational building block of the church, and his followers are living stones who are being built into a spiritual house. 

As one of the many little living stones in the church, remember that each diverse stone has great worth to Jesus and to his body. When you’re tempted to ignore your need for others or to discount those who aren’t like you, remember that each stone is balanced by all those around it, and all rest on the living Stone himself. 

Quote from:NIV Devotions

Being Content

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Father, please lead me today as You see best. Use the gifts You have given me to encourage others on their journey. Help me not to compare myself with others but to be content with who You have made me to be, Amen.

God shows His Plan

 I received this fantastic poem via email from my brother in Christ Ben, hope you enjoy!

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When God wants to drill a man and thrill a man and skill a man…

When God wants to mould a man to play the noblest part;

When He yearns with all His heart to create so great and bold a man

That all the world shall praise,

Watch His methods, watch His ways!

 

How He ruthlessly perfects whom He royally elects; how He hammers and hurts him,

And with mighty blows coverts him into frail shapes of clay that only God understands.

How his tortured heart is crying and he lifts beseeching hands….

How He bends but never breaks when His good He undertakes.

How He uses whom He chooses…. with every purpose fuses him;

By every art induces him to try His splendour out

God knows what He’s about!

 

When God wants to take a man and shake a man and wake a man…

When God wants to make a man to do the Father’s will;

When He yearns with all His soul to create him large and whole…

With what cunning He prepares him… how He goads and never spares him!

 

How He whets him, He frets him and in poverty, begets him…

How often He disappoints whom He sacredly anoints!

With what wisdom He will hide him; never minding what betide him…

Makes him lonely so that only God’s high messages shall reach him…

So that He may surely teach him what His heavenly Father planned.

 

When God wants to name a man and tame a man to do His heavenly best….

When He tries the highest test that His reckoning may bring…

How He reins him and restrains him so his body scarce contains him…

When He fires him and inspires him, keeps him yearning,

Ever burning for the tantalizing goal.

Lures and lacerates his soul… sets a challenge for His spirit;

Draws it highest, then he is near it!

Then makes a jungle, then he clears it;

Makes a desert that he fears it, if he can…

So does God make a man!

 

Then to test His Spirit’s wrath, He throws a mountain in his path,

Puts a bitter choice before him and relentlessly stands o’er him…

Climb or perish, so He says…. But watch His purpose, watch His ways!

God’s plan is wondrously kind… could we understand His mind?

Fools are they who call God blind!

 

When his feet are torn and bleeding; yet His Spirit mounts unheeding…

Blazing newer paths and finds….

Lo, the crisis, lo, the shouts that would call the leader out…

When the people need salvation does he rise to lead the nation;

Then does God show His plan… and the world has found its man!

 

(Anonymous author)

A Wedding Sandwich

Well it’s been an emotional (but rewarding) couple of weeks with a wedding sandwiched between 2 funerals. 1st was Sarah’s Grans funeral (see 🌹Beautiful Rosa🌹) then my sisters wedding (see My Sisters Wedding) and today we celebrated Sarah’s Spiritual guide & support Audrey Broderick’s life at a beautiful and moving memorial service. During the service Audrey had requested a poem to be read and i thought i’d share it with you….

You can shed tears that she is gone
or you can smile because she has lived.

You can close your eyes and pray that she’ll come back
or you can open your eyes and see all she’s left.

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her
or you can be full of the love you shared.

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.

You can remember her and only that she’s gone
or you can cherish her memory and let it live on.

You can cry and close your mind,
be empty and turn your back
or you can do what she’d want:
smile, open your eyes, love and go on.

David Harkins, © 1981

Undead: How Faith & The Living Dead Intersect

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 Undead. Author Clay Morgan explores death and the supernatural, explaining how faith and the living dead intersect.

Zombies aren’t just around for Halloween anymore, with the genre finding huge success in Hollywood. AMC’s hit show, The Walking Dead, is just one of the many Zombie-focused stories out there today.

Recently, Morgan shared with CBN.com about this phenomenon, what we can learn from these supernatural stories and how Jesus is the epitome of the “anti-zombie”.

What’s a Christian doing writing a book about zombies?

Clay Morgan: I wrote a book about zombies for much the same reason C.S. Lewis wrote a book like The Screwtape Letters about demons—to find light in the darkness. Tales of the supernatural are ready-made for Christianity. Zombies are ridiculously popular and culturally relevant, so zombies are a great way to get someone’s attention. From there we can have a marvelous discussion about spiritual life and spiritual death.

I’m also genuinely interested in the topic and pop culture in general. Millions of people never go to church or learn about biblical faith. For them, entertainment may be the sole medium informing their beliefs of the supernatural. If someone walks out of a movie about zombies or vampires asking questions about life beyond the grave then that’s a great opportunity to have a meaningful conversation about eternal things.

Have you received any criticism for examining themes like horror and zombies?

CM: Nothing major yet, but I certainly expected some. I’m sure some people don’t want anything to do with zombies, even as a starting point for discussing biblical miracles, but anyone who reads the book will see that it’s about much more. The stories are fun, so there’s not much of a horror/zombie vibe for most readers.

Why are we fascinated by the living dead?

CM: In part I think we’re compelled by the world in which they live, a post-apocalyptic environment where humanity as we know it is over. There are no more bills to pay or jobs to pursue or social circles to navigate. There’s equality in the face of death.

As for the monsters, it’s hard to look away from such an uncompromising threat. And on a deeper level we recognize the meaning of an existence with no hope for redemption. Their totality is so threatening. One misstep and it’s over. And the victims in these stories often don’t just die; they are turned into evil monsters which is more terrifying than anything.

Why is being scared entertaining?

CM: For most people it’s exciting, an adrenaline rush. The key is that we aren’t in any real danger, so we pay a lot of money for the illusion of such things. Maybe some of us are just thrill seekers. I suspect that part of it is a desire to find out what our thresholds are. What I do know is that if a horror movie plot like a zombie outbreak really happened it would not be fun! The real thing would be so truly terrifying, but entertainment is a different thing.

What’s your favorite zombie film, and why?

CM: I think the first zombie movie that truly captivated me was 28 Days Later in which a man wakes from a coma after London has already been devastated by plague. In addition to the quality of the filmmaking and suspense the story makes you think about fate and the meaningful relationships in our lives. Most of all, you have to consider what humanity becomes in the face of ultimate depravity. After all, zombies are a visible representation of cursed creation.

If I have a clear favorite, it’s probably Zombieland which balances humor with the fright of a world gone wrong. That one really allows you to see the empty stores and communities and consider what the world might look like during an apocalypse.

What spiritual lessons do zombie stories teach us?

CM: The biggest lesson might be that it’s possible to exist without truly being alive. A lot of us shamble through life, thoughtlessly going through the motions while feeling dead inside. That includes people in churches and youth groups. We may look like we’re alive to the people around us while masking the decay in our heart.

I used to punch in on Sundays and walk away largely unchanged. What are we living for? What is the meaning of our existence? Zombies aimlessly roam around looking for one more chance to gorge on an appetite of destruction, yet no matter how much they feed on what they desire they are always empty. If anybody has ever wondered what’s missing in life they can probably relate to that kind of emptiness. Fortunately, we don’t have to stay that way. God offers ultimate fulfillment, an abundant life.

A section of your book is titled, ‘Undead in the Bible’. Are you saying there are zombies in the Bible?

CM: That idea is really the heart of the book. Most of the chapters in Undead describe the six individuals in the New Testament who were raised from the dead by God. Jesus performed three of these jaw-dropping miracles and became the fourth. Peter and Paul were also used to bring someone back from the dead.

Of course, these individuals weren’t zombies in the Hollywood sense. Like Lazarus, those folks were restored to full life. But the wordplay makes sense since culture is so fascinated with dead people coming back to life. I thought it was pretty cool to show how many times that type of thing happened in the Bible. The same God who brought people back from physical death in the first century is still able to bring us back from spiritual death today.

In Undeadyou say we see ourselves in zombies. How’s that?

CM: The thing about zombies is that they look familiar in their t-shirts, jeans, curlers, and slippers. Other monsters—such as aliens, vampire, or werewolves for example—look so different. We see ourselves in zombies, the worst possible version of our neighbors and ourselves. They hit close to home.

Metaphorically, some of us see frightening reflections of ourselves when we look in the mirror because we know ugly, personal truths.

A major theme of a lot of zombie films and stories is when the living become more monstrous than the zombies in their quest for survival. What is it about zombie movies that help us to examine the dark side of human nature?

CM: You’ve nailed it. Zombie fiction is always about the survivors and how they’ll interact. The title of that show The Walking Dead isn’t a reference to the zombies but to the people attempting to go on. These stories reduce everything to its base. Money and social status don’t help anyone. In such dire circumstances the truth about human nature is revealed, and we know it isn’t pretty. The ancient prophet Jeremiah said that our hearts are deceitful above all else and even desperately wicked. Any good zombie story shows how wicked some people can be.

“Jesus is the anti-zombie”. Please, do explain.

CM: Zombies are the complete opposite to Jesus. They come back from the dead to take lives. Jesus came back from the dead to give life to all. Zombies are damaged, decaying, and terrifying. Jesus came back resurrected in perfection, a beautiful sight to all who believe. Zombies transform people from life to death. Jesus offers transformation from death to life. That’s why I call him the anti-zombie.

Undead also gets into vampires. How does that folklore play into this?

CM: Monster stories often subvert God’s story. For example, vampires receive immortality at the expense of their soul. They take blood to have life which is completely the opposite of Jesus who gave blood so that others might have life. Blood is a central theme throughout both scripture and vampire lore.

The other thing about vampires is that they are the ultimate in selfishness which is something I used to really struggle with. To use another metaphor, spiritual vampires are takers and they can be found anywhere, churches included. We need to make sure we’re not acting like vampires to the people around us by losing sight of what it means to be a servant like Jesus.

Beyond talk of zombies and vampires, this book speaks to deeper issues. What is the message?

CM: The ultimate message of Undead is that God is able to breathe life into each one of us. He wants to transform us, and it will be the most awesome miracle we’ve ever experienced. Spiritual death isn’t just about ignoring God. If we’re honest, some of us may be in churches every week but know that something big is missing from our lives. Like Lazarus, it’s possible to be a friend of Jesus for a while before experiencing a whole new level of his miraculous, life-giving power in a new way.

Who do you know that needs to hear about the transforming power of God? Maybe they’re not even interested in going to church but they just might find Undead engaging enough to discover the mind-blowing force of God’s love.


Hannah GoodwynHannah Goodwyn serves as the Family and Entertainment producer for CBN.com. For more articles and information, visit Hannah’s bio page.

✞ Promise: Rejoice and Exult

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Romans 5:2 Amplified Bible

Through Him also we have [our] access (entrance, introduction) by faith into this grace (state of God’s favor) in which we [firmly and safely] stand. And let us rejoice and exult in our hope of experiencing and enjoying the glory of God.

I Wouldn’t Do That For A Million Dollars!

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An American tourist in India stood by in awe as he watched Mother Teresa lovingly clean the infected wounds of a horribly disfigured leper, “Sister,” he commented, “I wouldn’t do that for a million dollars!” Her response, “Neither would I, brother. Neither would I.”

Mother Teresa

We Are His Temple

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“We are his temple. We do not turn in a certain directlon to pray. We are not bound by having to go into a building so that we can commune with God. There are no unique postures and times and limitations that restrict our access to God. My relationship with God is intimate and personal. The Christian does not go to the temple to worship. The Christian takes the temple with him or her. Jesus lifts us beyond the building and pays the human body the highest compliment by making it His dwelling place, the place where He meets with us. Even today He would overturn the tables of those who make it a marketplace for their own lust, greed, and wealth.”

Ravi Zacharias

He Has Risen!

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Matthew 28:6-7 Amplified Bible

He is not here; He has risen, as He said [He would do]. Come, see the place where He lay.

Then go quickly and tell His disciples, He has risen from the dead, and behold, He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.

Gratitude Unlocks The Fullness Of Life

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Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.  It turns what we have into enough, and more.  It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.  It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

Melody Beattie

Overflowing With Hope

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“The Samaritan woman grasped what He said with fervor that came from an awareness of her real need. The transaction was fascinating. She has come with a bucket. He sent her back with a spring of living water. She had come as a reject. He sent her back being accepted by God Himself. She came wounded. He sent her back whole. She came laden with questions. He sent her back as a source for answers. She came living a life of quiet desperation. She ran back overflowing with hope. The disciples missed it all. It was lunchtime for them.”

Ravi Zacharias

✞ Music “My Life Is An Offering by Sovereign Grace Music

“My Life Is An Offering”
[Based on Romans 12:1-2]

VERSE 1
This life is an altar
Where I want to offer
My soul, and my mind, and strength
Cleansed by Your mercy to live a life worthy
Of the One Who called my name

CHORUS
Jesus, be glorified
Jesus, be magnified
Let me be a pleasing sacrifice
Jesus, be glorified
Jesus, be magnified
Here on the altar
My life is an offering

VERSE 2
How could I not love You?
You authored my rescue
Raised me up from death to life
Your Spirit is in me, revealing Your glory
Oh what joy as I give my life

BRIDGE
I choose to lose my life, Lord
And find it in You

✞ Music “Dry Bones” by Worship Central

“Dry Bones”

God is here, moving in our hearts
Looking to pour out His love
Abundantly in us

We are here, longing to be changed
Breathe into our lives again
Don’t let us leave the same

Spirit of God, Fire of love
Come have Your way in us
[Your] glory and power awaken us now
Lord, have Your way in us

You are here making all things new
Jesus, light the fire in us
[and] we will burn for You

Spirit of God, Fire of love
Come have Your way in us
[Your] glory and power awaken us now
Lord, have Your way in us

Have Your way

These dry bones will live again
We’re nothing without You, nothing without You!

Spirit of God, Fire of love
Come have Your way in us
[Your] glory and power awaken us now
Lord, have Your way in us

[speak to the dry bones]
[speak to the dry bones and they will live again]
[You breathe Your life upon us all]
[we will know that You alive]
[there is no one else]
[we couldn’t do nothing without You, Jesus, nothing!]

These dry bones will live again
We’re nothing without You, nothing without You!

I Am Your Servant

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Father, I fall on my face before You in worship this morning. Please forgive me for those times I’ve treated You as though You were my servant, somehow expected to meet my demands. I am Your servant, Lord, and I humbly bow before You today. Amen.

The Gladness Of The Man Of Sorrows

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As he sees us day by day more conformed to his image, he rejoices in us. Just as you see the sculptor with his chisel fetching out the statue which lies hidden in the block of marble, taking off a corner here, and a chip there, and a piece here—see how he smiles when he brings out the features of the form divine—so our Saviour, as he proceeds with his graving tool, working through the operation of the Spirit, and making us like unto himself, finds much delight in us. The painter makes rough drafts at first, and lays on the colours roughly; some do not understand what he is doing, and for three or four sittings the portrait is much unlike the man it aims at representing; but the painter can discern the features in the canvas; he sees it looming through that mist and haze of colour; he knows that beauty will yet beam forth from yonder daubs and blotches. So Jesus, though we are yet but mere outlines of his image, can discover his own perfection in us where no eye but his own, as the Mighty Artist, can perceive it. Dear friends, it is for this reason, because we are the work of his hands, that he takes delight in us. We are his brethren—and brothers should delight in brothers. We are his spouse—and where should the husband find his comfort but in his bride? We are his body—shall not the head be content with the members? We are one with him, vitally, personally, everlastingly one; and it is little marvel, therefore, if we have a mutual joy in each other, so that his garments smell of myrrh, aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces of his church, wherein he has been made glad.

As yet we do not see The Lord Jesus Christ or what we will be as the finished product of his work for us and in us, but that fact should not lessen our joy  Our Saviour is totally satisfied with the fruit of his work for sinners.

by Charles Spurgeon

Steady Perseverance In Holiness

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The lives of some professing Christians are a series of stumbles; they are never quite down and yet they are seldom on their feet. This is not a fit thing for a believer. He is invited to walk with God; by faith he can attain steady perseverance in holiness, and he should do so.

Charles H. Spurgeon

Faith & Wisdom

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James 1:2-8 Easy-to-Read Version

Faith and Wisdom

My brothers and sisters, you will have many kinds of trouble. But this gives you a reason to be very happy. You know that when your faith is tested, you learn to be patient in suffering. If you let that patience work in you, the end result will be good. You will be mature and complete. You will be all that God wants you to be.

Do any of you need wisdom? Ask God for it. He is generous and enjoys giving to everyone. So he will give you wisdom. But when you ask God, you must believe. Don’t doubt him. Whoever doubts is like a wave in the sea that is blown up and down by the wind. People like that are thinking two different things at the same time. They can never decide what to do. So they should not think they will receive anything from the Lord.

Your Love Is Blind

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Loving Saviour, i don’t deserve the smallest of your mercies, and yet you continue to love, sustain and bless me in immeasurable ways! i thank you  for accepting me, just the way I am. Your love is blind to all of my faults, and ugly sides. I pray that You would work through me to love others compassionately, seeing through the surface. Amen.

To All The Churches #7

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Revelation 3:14-22 The Voice

Letter to Laodicea

Write down My words, and send them to the messenger of the church in Laodicea. “These are the words of the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of God’s creation:

“I know your works. You are neither cold with apathy nor hot with passion. It would be better if you were one or the other, but you are neither. So because you are lukewarm, neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. You claim, ‘I am rich, I have accumulated riches, and I need nothing’; but you do not realize that you are miserable, pathetic, poor, blind, and naked. So here is what I suggest you do: buy true gold from Me (gold refined by fire so that you can be truly rich), white garments (to cover you so that you can keep the shame of your nakedness from showing), and eye ointment (to treat your eyes so that you may see clearly).

“Those I love I also correct and discipline. Therefore, be shamelessly committed to Me, and turn back.[a] Now pay attention; I am standing at the door and knocking. If any of you hear My voice and open the door, then I will come in to visit with you and to share a meal at your table, and you will be with Me.

“The one who conquers through faithfulness even unto death I will place next to Me on My throne, just as I Myself conquered and took a place of honor with My Father on His throne.

“Let the person who is able to hear, listen to and follow what the Spirit proclaims to all the churches.”

King James Version

To All The Churches #2

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Revelation 2:8-11 The Voice

Letter to Smyrna

Write down My words, and send them to the messenger of the church in Smyrna. “These are the words of the First and the Last, the One who was dead and returned to life:

“I know your deeds and the difficult ordeal you are enduring and your poverty, although you are actually rich. I am aware of the offensive accusations preached by those who call themselves ‘Jews.’ But these people are not the Jews they pretend to be; they are actually the congregation of Satan. In the face of suffering, do not fear. Watch; the devil will throw some of you into prison shortly so that you might be tested, and you will endure great affliction for 10 days. Be faithful throughout your life, until the day you die, and I will give you the victor’s wreath of life.

“Let the person who is able to hear, listen to and follow what the Spirit proclaims to all the churches. The one who conquers through faithfulness even unto death will escape the second death.”

View King James Version

✞ Music “Oceans” by Hillsong United

“Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)”

You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You’ve never failed and You won’t start now

So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior

I will call upon Your Name
Keep my eyes above the waves
My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine

Imprinted With God’s Image

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Hebrews 1 The Voice

Long ago, at different times and in various ways, God’s voice came to our ancestors through the Hebrew prophets. But in these last days, it has come to us through His Son, the One who has been given dominion over all things and through whom all worlds were made.

This is the One who—imprinted with God’s image, shimmering with His glory—sustains all that exists through the power of His word. He was seated at the right hand of God once He Himself had made the offering that purified us from all our sins. This Son of God is elevated as far above the heavenly messengers as His holy name is elevated above theirs.

Most images of angels are influenced by art and pop culture—and are far removed from the Bible. The word “angel” literally means “messenger,” and it can refer to either a human being or a heavenly being. The Hebrews author is writing about heavenly messengers.

In the Bible, heavenly messengers have several functions—executors of God’s judgment, guardians of God’s people, heralds of God’s plans. They appear at critical moments to chosen people who play important roles in God’s salvation, such as arriving to announce the birth and resurrection of Jesus and to transmit God’s law to Moses. They are no more than messengers, created beings, who serve the will of God and His Son. Recognizing their place, they bow before the Son in loving adoration.

For no heavenly messengers have ever heard God address them with these words of the psalms:

You are My Son.
Today I have become Your Father.

Or heard Him promise,

I will be to You a Father,
and You will be My Son.

Now, when the Son, the firstborn of God, was brought into the world, God said,

Let all My heavenly messengers worship Him.

Concerning them, God said,

I make My heavenly messengers like the winds,
and My servants like a flame.

But to the Son He said,

God, Your throne is eternal;
You will rule Your kingdom with the scepter of justice.
You have loved what is right
and hated what is evil;
That is why God, Your God, has anointed You
with the oil of gladness and lifted You above Your companions.

And God continues,

In the beginning, You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth
and set the skies above us with Your own hands.
But while they will someday pass away,
You remain forever;
when they wear out like old clothes,
You will roll them up
and change them into something new.
But You will never change;
Your years will never come to an end.

Did God ever say to any of the heavenly messengers,

Sit here, at My right hand, in the seat of honor;
and I’ll put all Your enemies under Your feet?

No, of course not. The heavenly messengers are only spirits and servants, sent out to minister to those who will certainly inherit salvation.

Hebrews 2:1-5

That is why we ought to pay even closer attention to the voice that has been speaking so that we will never drift away from it. For if the words of instruction and inspiration brought by heaven’s messengers were valid, and if we live in a universe where sin and disobedience receive their just rewards, then how will we escape destruction if we ignore this great salvation? We heard it first from our Lord Jesus, then from those who passed on His teaching. God also testifies to this truth by signs and wonders and miracles and the gifts of the Holy Spirit lighting on those He chooses.

This letter is punctuated with passages that sound an alarm: danger, both imminent and eternal, is at hand. The real danger is the gentle erosion of rock-solid commitments.

How often it happens! A person makes a decision to follow Jesus. He practically explodes with joy. Then life happens and the invisible forces that shape culture in our world—the idols of consumerism, relativism, and materialism—begin their exacting work to shape us into an image that no longer reflects our Savior. Over and over again, the writer warns us to be careful. Don’t neglect this great salvation. Make sure the anchor holds.

✞ Music “Yearn” by Shane & Shane

holy design
this place in time
that I might seek and find my God
my God

Lord I want to yearn for You
I want to burn with passion
over You and only You
Lord I want to yearn

Your joy is mine
yet why am I fine
with all my singing and bringing grain
in light of Him

oh You give life and breath
through Him You give all things
in Him we live and move
that’s why I sing

We Need You

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Father, help us to do your Word and not just hear it. Help us to live a life that is pleasing to you in what we say, what we watch, what music we listen to, what we wear, what we think, where we go, and how we live. help us to be mindful that we represent you. 

Help us to live by and lift up the standard that has already been set by your Son. Bring us into alignment with your Word & your will for our lives. Help us to be better stewards over our time, over our finances, over our resources, over our families, and over all that you have given us. Let our delight be in the Lord, the Word of God. Help us To meditate on your Word day & night. 

Please give us the Spirit of discernment so that your will for us might be made clear.

Help us Lord, we need you, in Jesus name, Amen.

Keep On Singing

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Colossians 3:16 The Voice

Let the word of the Anointed One richly inhabit your lives. With all wisdom teach, counsel, and instruct one another. Sing the psalms, compose hymns and songs inspired by the Spirit, and keep on singing—sing to God from hearts full and spilling over with thankfulness.

The Most Excellent Way

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1 Corinthians 12:31 The Voice 

Pursue the greater gifts, and let me tell you of a more excellent way—love.

1 Corinthians 13  The Voice

Gifts of the Spirit, which are intended to strengthen the church body, often divide the body because members of the church elevate those who possess the more visible gifts over those whose gifts function in the background. In fact, this is the very problem facing the Corinthians. So while talking about the importance and function of these gifts in chapters 12 and 14, Paul shifts his focus to the central role love plays in a believer’s life in chapter 13. Love is essential for the body to be unified and for members to work together. Members of the body that are very different, with little in common, are able to appreciate and even enjoy others because of the love that comes when a life is submitted to God.

What if I speak in the most elegant languages of people or in the exotic languages of the heavenly messengers, but I live without love? Well then, anything I say is like the clanging of brass or a crashing cymbal. 2 What if I have the gift of prophecy, am blessed with knowledge and insight to all the mysteries, or what if my faith is strong enough to scoop a mountain from its bedrock, yet I live without love? If so, I am nothing. 3 I could give all that I have to feed the poor, I could surrender my body to be burned as a martyr, but if I do not live in love, I gain nothing by my selfless acts.

Paul boils it all down for the believers in Corinth. Religious people often spend their time practicing rituals, projecting dogma, and going through routines that might look like Christianity on the outside but that lack the essential ingredient that brings all of it together—love! It is a loving God who birthed creation and now pursues a broken people in the most spectacular way. That same love must guide believers, so faith doesn’t appear to be meaningless noise.

4 Love is patient; love is kind. Love isn’t envious, doesn’t boast, brag, or strut about. There’s no arrogance in love; 5 it’s never rude, crude, or indecent—it’s not self-absorbed. Love isn’t easily upset. Love doesn’t tally wrongs 6 or celebrate injustice; but truth—yes, truth—is love’s delight! 7 Love puts up with anything and everything that comes along; it trusts, hopes, and endures no matter what. 8 Love will never become obsolete. Now as for the prophetic gifts, they will not last; unknown languages will become silent, and the gift of knowledge will no longer be needed. 9 Gifts of knowledge and prophecy are partial at best, at least for now, 10 but when the perfection and fullness of God’s kingdom arrive, all the parts will end. 11 When I was a child, I spoke, thought, and reasoned in childlike ways as we all do. But when I became a man, I left my childish ways behind. 12 For now, we can only see a dim and blurry picture of things, as when we stare into polished metal. I realize that everything I know is only part of the big picture. But one day, when Jesus arrives, we will see clearly, face-to-face. In that day, I will fully know just as I have been wholly known by God. 13 But now faith, hope, and love remain; these three virtues must characterize our lives. The greatest of these is love.

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